On the sidelines of the International Customs Forum, the Minister of Finance of the Russian Federation Anton Siluanov and Ruslan Davydov, First Deputy Head of the FCS of Russia, met with Kunio Mikuriya, Secretary General of the WCO.
The parties discussed the current state of cooperation between the Russian customs service and the WCO, the significance of the contribution of the Russian Federation to the work of the international customs community, as well as key projects for the Russian side from the organizations being implemented in the WCO.
As the Minister noted, the WCO is undoubtedly the main international institution, which provides the platform for global rules of the customs to be formed. Anton Siluanov stressed that the FCS of Russia is one of the most active WCO members with an extensive practical and administrative experience in the organization, implementation of international WCO instruments and operating in accordance with the highest quality standards of customs administration.
The parties touched upon the implementation of such projects at the WCO platform as the formation of a mechanism to assess the effectiveness of customs authorities, the use of additional languages in the work of the organization, and the priority of digitalization of customs processes.
During the discussion, Anton Siluanov noted that the Russian party promotes the idea of securing the leading role for the organization on all issues of customs administration in the world, and expects that the legal instruments developed by the WCO will be binding on all its members, and projects implemented under the auspices of the WCO will change the image of customs services and the paradigm of international cooperation.
Ruslan Davydov also emphasized during the dialogue that these projects are of particular interest to the Russian customs service and the Russian party is open for a constructive dialogue in order to refine, optimize and improve them.
Kunio Mikuriya noted that Russia is an important member of the WCO, holding a leading role among customs administrations, including as a representative of the European WCO region and the global customs community as a whole. He noted the contribution of the Russian Federation in the course of fulfilling the duties of the chairman of the highest political body - the WCO Council (by Ruslan Davydov), twice the chairman of the European Region, as well as in a number of key working bodies and strategic projects in the WCO. Kunio Mikuriya welcomed Russian initiatives to create in the WCO a global mechanism for assessing the effectiveness of customs services and introducing additional languages, including Russian, into the administrative practice. He emphasized the importance of information technology and the great potential of Russia to bring knowledge and experience to the WCO in the field of information and analytical work with large amounts of data. He also noted that customs is one of the central agencies at the border and includes a wide range of tasks in addition to fiscal, including economic development, protection of society, security and facilitation of cross-border trade. Data from other agencies and businesses that concentrate on customs in regulating international trade identifies it as an advisory body to governments on rationale, major trends, reforms and strategic objectives.
During the meeting, the role and importance of the World Customs Organization and national administrations for the development of world trade were noted. The parties agreed to continue close interaction at the international platform.